Saturday, June 10, 2006

Meeting People Online

We often hear about sexual predators online and the precautions that parents should take to protect their children, but sometimes the kids will go to great lengths to do incredibly stupid things.

A 16 year old girl lied to her mother to get a passport and then flew to Jordan (the country) to meet a 25 year old guy she met at myspace(dot)com. Fortunately she left a trail that the FBI could easily track and she is now back with her family, but what a stupid thing to do.

I remember a co-worker of mine going frantic when she discovered her (then 14 year old) daughter having extended conversations with an adult in Dallas Texas (remember we are in Michigan), and she had given him her phone number.

Are kids that desperate for attention or are they just that trusting of strangers?


Blogger ABFreedom said...

Jordon is a bit much ... seems to be more then just a little desperate .. or very gullible ..

8:18 PM  
Blogger Pamela Reece said...

I have 4 children and it is extremely, and I stress EXTREMELY difficult to give them individual attention each and every day. However, I always, and I mean constantly, tell them, "If you need me, tell me the password "Pamela" and that means, "I need you now". I make it a point to be fair and reasonable, but I also tell remind my kids that "Mom is not perfect, I'm just like you....just older." When I need forgiveness, I ask for it, when I'm just plain crabby, I tell them so, when I am just angry, I tell them so. I am very clear to my kids. Doing this lets them know they can say the same thing to me.

I've had my 11 year old recently say to me, "Mom, you are really pissing me off. You aren't listening!!"

So, in the end, am I right about my parenting or not? I guess I'll find out if some day they show up on the Jerry Springer show or worse yet do what this young girl did.

Parent's only do what they know.

10:09 PM  
Blogger Lone Pony said...

"Are kids that desperate for attention or are they just that trusting of strangers?" Both. I've tried to talk sense into girls who do silly things like this. They compare it to meeting people with online dating services. Going to Jordan is pretty extreme.

9:25 PM  
Blogger shoprat said...

abf and lp Yes that is a bit far to go.

Pamela I realize it is very difficult and you are making a real effort and I do not believe you are making the same mistake this mother did.

9:38 PM  
Blogger armed_and_christian said...

Pam; not that I am any sort of parenting expert, but I believe honesty and transparency are two of the biggest gifts you can give your children from yourself. It is good that they know that we do not consider ourselves infallible.

Hey, if we're wrong in our approaches, our kids will try to straighten out our mistakes and make their own while raising our grandchildren. :)

I have let mine know that I don't have any sort of definitive "Parenting Core Rulebook" apart from the Bible, (and it is frustratingly incomplete on many parenting issues) and that I am mostly making up my parenting approach as we go along, basing strategies on past successes and logical extrapolations.

About once a year or so, I apologize to our oldest, letting him know that I will make all of my "best" mistakes on him, in preparation for his younger siblings.

Keep up the good work.

10:21 PM  
Blogger Little Miss Chatterbox said...

I heard about this and yes, talk about insane. What I don't get is common sense tells you not to let teens have computers w/internet access in their rooms. My husband and I decided that a long time ago and the more I hear the better decision it seems.

12:29 AM  
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